Mexican Hot Chocolate Snickerdoodles Go Gluten-Free

We played couples’ bunko Saturday night. I’ve always enjoyed the game with girlfriends because it’s a great opportunity to chat and eat…and eat…and eat…and if you’re lucky, you win enough money to fill your gas tank. But I’ve never played with the husbands. We learned a few things.

1. Guys like to trash talk, back talk, and sweet talk the dice. The dice. As though they can be swayed.

2. No topic is too taboo.

3. The fellas do things I’ve never seen from the ladies–discussions of probabilities for throwing certain numerical combinations and scanning the tables to see how many wins, losses, and bunkos the competition has come to mind.

4. The gentlemen are not dainty eaters.

Everyone takes home lots of leftovers after the ladies play, but on this night, we were scrounging for the last bite of bean dip, the last crumb of tortilla chip, the last piece of shrimp. We weren’t above foraging the pan for the bits of enchilada that had been baked into the pan.

Nacho Man and I brought cookies. We’re not talking sugar cookies or chocolate chip cookies. Nothing with sprinkles. You bring grownup cookies to a grownup party. We brought Mexican Hot Chocolate Snickerdoodles from the Post Punk Kitchen. But we went gluten-free so that everyone at the party could partake.

We’ve been exploring gluten-free cooking and baking in our home recently. It alleviates Lupe’s eczema, which means she gets to take a break from topical treatments that basically eat away layers of her skin.  The challenge has been finding recipes for baked goods and pastas that are so amazing that you don’t miss gluten. We’re getting there.

I’ve tried several basic mixes, but this one from Whole Living seems to be the hands-down winner for cakes and cookies. The ingredients–superfine rice flour (this recipe calls for brown rice flour; I used white rice flour), tapioca flour or starch, and potato starch, are inexpensive and readily available in supermarkets.

If you want to substitute this gluten-free mix for the flour in the cookie recipe, measuring by weight is the most accurate method (and preferred by serious bakers, gluten-free or not). I used my Oxo kitchen scale to weigh the 1 2/3 cups of flour called for in the original recipe. According to my scale, it weighed 7 3/8 ounces. So I weighed 7 3/8 ounces of the gluten-free mix and added it to the recipe.

The cookies were delicious–moist, chewy, and with a spicy kick that creeps up on you. A cookie that’s vegan and gluten-free might sound grownup in the worst possible way, as though it’s a euphemism for a high fiber wafer or a dog treat, but these are amazing.

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